Our Daily Thread 12-13-13

Good Morning!

Only 12 Days Until Christmas!

For those who may not have seen them yet, here’s a picture of Kim’s professionally wrapped Christmas presents. 🙂

kims gifts

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On this day in 1636 the United States National Guard was created when militia regiments were organized by the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

In 1862 an estimated 11,000 Northern soldiers were killed or wounded when Union forces were defeated by Confederates under General Robert E. Lee, at the Battle of Fredericksburg.

In 1913 the Federal Reserve System was established.

In 1964, in El Paso, TX, President Johnson and Mexican President Gustavo Diaz Ordaz set off an explosion that diverted the Rio Grande River, reshaping the U.S.-Mexican border.

And in 1982 the Sentry Armored Car Company in New York discovered that $11 million had been stolen from its headquarters overnight. It was the biggest cash theft in U.S. history.

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Quote of the Day

“What day is so dark that there is no ray of sunshine to penetrate the gloom?”

Mary Todd Lincoln

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Today is this guy’s birthday.

Today is also Randy Owen’s birthday.

And this one is a request.

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Anyone have a QoD?

52 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 12-13-13

  1. The quote reminds me that I recently saw the movie Lincoln. I thought Sally Fields did a good job as Mary Todd Lincoln but Tommy Lee Jones stole the show.

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  2. I am here. I had a few things to get done first thing..It looks like I will be picking up my sellers this afternoon and taking them to closing. There son cannot do it and this is what we decided. If I weren’t the real estate agent on this I wouldn’t feel as squeamish about doing this, but as the agent I don’t want to appear to be coercing them into anything. I is difficult when you have to imagine the outcome of everything you do being a law suit.
    Speaking of law–they have another family friend that used to be quite the high powered attorney. He will most probably be attending closing with them. He is setting up a trust account with the proceeds from the sale. The son of the sellers told me yesterday that he had once offered to pay this lawyer friend for his services. The guy chuckled and said if you had to pay me you couldn’t afford me. Just let me do this because I like your dad. See, it is a Christmas Miracle! There is a lawyer with a heart! 😉

    It was decided yesterday that we are going to give away door prizes at our company Christmas party. Guess what that means? Yep, you guessed it. Kim will be hitting the road in just a little while to beg. I am good at this. Too bad it isn’t a paying position.

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  3. Kim, that was a “highlight” of the Christmas party at the last place I worked, a drawing for all the free junk they’d gotten that year. Over the years, I won a tire change and a fire extinguisher.

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  4. I had to round up prizes from area businesses once for a service club I belonged to through my former newspaper. It was kind of fun and you really did wind up with a bunch of creative and very cool “gifts.”

    Along with using high-quality fabric ribbon on gifts, that gift wrap workshop I covered also suggested the transparent wire ribbon shown on Kim’s presents. It’s ribbon stretched between two very tiny, thin wires that you can bend and shape. Fun to work with and elegant looking (as you can see).

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  5. No, no, no! We do not want to see the guys’ presents! It’s too close to Christmas for such donwers. 😦

    (Besides, they probably haven’t bought them yet, let alone wrapped them.)

    Full disclosure: my husband does most of the shopping for our family. He’s great at tracking down deals and figuring out the best brand (best ratings, best price). And I don’t put a bow on every gift (some have to be on the bottom, after all), but he does.

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  6. Kim puts most of us to shame with her gift wrapping.

    And, as Chas says, It’s Friday!

    We’re supposed to get our first real snow tonight and tomorrow. The students are all in a kerfuffle over whether we’re going to get out early. The projection is that the worst is supposed to start about the time we get out.

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  7. Kim, I’d take a box with nothing in it, and that way I could just leave it wrapped. 🙂 I felt that way about one gift I got at my shower; It was wrapped so beautifully, with a large fake rose on top, that I didn’t want to open it. So I got someone to take a picture of the gift, and I kept the flower. That way I got to enjoy the beauty and the gift too.

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  8. I would post some, but at this point it would just be a pile of unwrapped toys since I haven’t even started wrapping yet. 🙂

    I told ya’s the other day, I don’t much care for it. Least favorite part of the holiday. Since there’s 12 days to go, I’ll start in about 10. But first my wife must remind me repeatedly that I’m running out of time. It gets thru eventually, but I’m a little stubborn believe it or not. 🙂

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  9. I was thinking we hadn’t heard from annms in a while. Hellooo out there?

    Since I’m off today I’m going to the ladies’ book/Bible study this morning followed by lunch out — just like a woman of leisure, I am. 🙂

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  10. Yesterday . was a crazy busy birthday for me. Started out at the county tag office trying to work on transferrinv title of a ca to son. A friend met me and we went down to the state capitol building for a prayer walk. The capitol was lovely with a giant Christmas tree filling the rotunda. An all African American children’s choir was singing songs on the steps going up to the top floor. They were from my county’s magnet School of the Arts. Afterwards my friend and I went to Mary Mac’s, an olx Atlanta Tea Room with sonderful Southdrn cooking. After I got home I had time to open the nice Flat rate box of small gifts from my friend in CA. Next I had to get the car title to FedEx for overnight delivery. And then husband got home and I had a few moments to open cards from him. He gave me a silver necklace with a small silver pendant with a simple J on it. Then we went to a really nice restaurant for a steak dinner. It was a great birthday, but did not allow time for me to even say Hi on bere.

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  11. Wondering what some of you folks would think of this situation I was thinking about earlier. (This is not related to me, & I’m not looking for advice for someone else, but I do know a couple women for whom this could be pertinent.)

    Emily & I were talking about how controlling R was when they were together. For instance, he insisted that she stop wearing dangly earrings & make-up. (There were many more things in her life that he tried to micromanage, too.)

    That got me to thinking & wondering. Bear with me for a moment…

    Even as Christians, we do not believe in enabling bad behavior. For example, if a Christian wife has an alcoholic husband, we would not consider her “unsubmissive” to him if she refused to cover up for him, or in any way enabled his continued drinking. We’d say she needs to administer “tough love” to him.

    I have heard & read of wives told that it is right to submit to their husbands’ preferences in the way they (the wives) wear their hair, or in how they dress, or in what they do with their time & such. I agree that this is indeed good, if the husband’s preferences come from his love & concern for his wife.

    But what about when those “preferences” are actually a way of controlling his wife, forcing his own way on her? No matter how much a wife submits to his wishes, there is no pleasing a man like that. There will always be something he wants changed. How does a Christian wife respond & act?

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  12. Janice had a birthday and we didn’t even know.

    Some of the cartoons, I didn’t understand. I haven’t seen most of them before.
    We had a very nice and very large turnout for our VIP luncheon.
    I learned where Mountain Home is because that’s where I went to pick up my people.
    😦 Our Children’s Film Festival starts at 9:00 tomorrow. I’m glad they told me because I was thinking 10:00.

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  13. Saturday morning here. Done with school, though I may go back and get my lunch things that I left in the frig. Today is my day to wash and pack. And thanks for reminding me to pack up those gift bags! Since all of my winter clothes are in California, I have lots of room in my suitcase. So… as we do here, I am taking all sorts of things to mail for others. Should be interesting. Also we always take letters to mail as it is too expensive to mail from here.

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  14. 1. Wondering what some of you folks would think of this situation I was thinking about earlier. (This is not related to me, & I’m not looking for advice for someone else, but I do know a couple women for whom this could be pertinent.)
    Emily & I were talking about how controlling R was when they were together. For instance, he insisted that she stop wearing dangly earrings & make-up. (There were many more things in her life that he tried to micromanage, too.)
    My answer to this question is that obviously R liked the way Emily looked with dangly earrings and make-up enough to ensure that you have Forrest! I am older and calmer these days but if that had happened to me in my 20’s EVERY pair of earrings I bought would have been dangly and I would have made my face up even on stay at home-do nothing days. Nothing burns me up more than for a man to think you are just perfect until he snags you and then starts criticizing you. I suggest you Google the terms Narcissist and Gaslighting.
    That got me to thinking & wondering. Bear with me for a moment…
    Even as Christians, we do not believe in enabling bad behavior. For example, if a Christian wife has an alcoholic husband, we would not consider her “unsubmissive” to him if she refused to cover up for him, or in any way enabled his continued drinking. We’d say she needs to administer “tough love” to him.
    This is another hot button for me. My very own grandfather was “stepping out” on my grandmother for years but the minister kept encouraging her to forgive him and stay. Of course that was 60 plus years ago, but just recently a minister told a friend of mine she should forgive the lying, cheating rat she was married to. Yeah, 60 years ago any disease my grandfather dragged home would have been cured with penicillin What my friend’s husband might have dragged home could very well stick around for life.
    I have heard & read of wives told that it is right to submit to their husbands’ preferences in the way they (the wives) wear their hair, or in how they dress, or in what they do with their time & such. I agree that this is indeed good, if the husband’s preferences come from his love & concern for his wife.
    I don’t know a whole lot of men who put a lot of thought into hair styles or women’s clothing unless they are gay or cross dressers. I have known of two straight men in my entire life than had good taste in women’s clothing. As far as make-up and hair style I will take my hair stylist’s and the makeup lady at Dillard’s opinion over a man’s any day
    I recently explained this to a woman that wives are to be submissive to husbands but husbands should treat their wives as Christ treats His church. His love for us is so great that He laid down his life. A marriage isn’t supposed to be a parent/child relationship. It is supposed to be two whole adults who love the other and wants what is best for the other person and makes them happy. I personally can’t understand how a man could want a mealy mouthed little woman who didn’t poke back occasionally.
    But what about when those “preferences” are actually a way of controlling his wife, forcing his own way on her? No matter how much a wife submits to his wishes, there is no pleasing a man like that. There will always be something he wants changed. How does a Christian wife respond & act?
    This is almost a casebook example of a Narcissist. If you ever tangle with one you will be thankful to come out on the other side. Nothing matters to them but what they want and how they want it. It is almost sociopathic. A woman would be lucky to come out of a relationship with one of these men with enough confidence to find her own way home.
    Yes, there is submission to the head of the home, IF he truly has your best interests at heart, but a woman should be enough of an individual to function without his direction and to realize when she is being abused. Words leave deeper scars than any fist ever could.

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  15. Karen, I wrote a long post half an hour ago. Half an hour of both me and my husband fighting with our internet connection, and unfortunately I didn’t copy what I wrote into Word. So here’s my chance to try again (and this isn’t a reply to any responses above me, but trying to remember what I wrote the first time!).

    Several things come to mind. In the first place, since Emily wasn’t R’s wife, it’s hard to argue that she had any obligation to submit to him. But since she was living with him as his wife, in effect, that’s a tricky one. But for me, when I was courting my husband I wanted to please him even when I didn’t think it was “required.” For example, I got my ears pierced for him (at age 44). But he also asked me to dye my hair, and that was something I very much did NOT want to do. So I finally told him that if it mattered greatly to him, I’d do it, but if it didn’t, I’d really rather not, and he withdrew the request.

    My overall thoughts on the issue are these: If what he asks her to do is sin, for example he wants her to dress immodestly in public so he can flaunt what kind of woman he has, she can and must say no. If his request is not sin, then yes, she should do it (or approach him again asking him to change his mind, basically an “appeal”). Yes, he might be trying to control her; he might be acting out of his own self-interest or some other bad motive. But a wife isn’t responsible for her husband’s motives; she is only responsible for her own! In fact, Scripture even says that a godly wife’s sweet spirit might be part of what God uses to convert her unbelieving husband!

    Maybe she never will please him no matter what she does. So, do it as unto God and not her husband. Do it as an act of obedient service to God, with her husband as the beneficiary. Again, he’s responsible for his responses to her; she is not. We submit because God told us to, not because a man deserves it; likewise he leads because God gave him that responsibility, whether or not he wants it.

    If a woman doesn’t want to live with the requirements a man has, then she shouldn’t marry him. If she marries him and then finds out his requirements or he changes them, “as long as it isn’t sin, do it” still applies.

    If a husband is abusing her or otherwise mistreating her, that might be a matter for church discipline or even criminal prosecution. But that’s a different matter altogether than trying to judge whether his motives are pure enough, and acting only if they are. (Which of us ever has totally pure motives? I do my very best to judge another’s actions, not the unknowable motives.)

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  16. In all fairness Karen, my husband likes to go shopping with me and he gives me his opinion of what he thinks looks nice and what he doesn’t. I like for him to think I look nice therefore if he really likes something on me and I like it, I buy it. If he likes it and I don’t I don’t buy it. I would never wear it because I would be uncomfortable. If I like it and he doesn’t I don’t buy it because I want him to think I look nice. He is one of the TWO straight men I mentioned above.
    My hair is currently longer than it has been since I was in college because he asked me to let it grow out and at first I didn’t have time to go get it cut anyway. My hair stylist has layered it so I don’t look like hair where are you going with Kim. I now can pull it back or put it up. Something I wasn’t able to do when I was younger because it was so thick. He likes it and it doensn’t bother me. I have asked a couple of my friends to tell me the truth—don’t let me be one of thse women that look awful with long hair because they are too old.
    He has tried to convince me to let my hair go natural. I have told you many times I started turning grey in my mid to late twenties. I don’t like my grey and still feel that I am too young to do that. He understands and doesn’t say much about me coloring it.
    None of his actions and nothing he says is abusive. If I ever thought he was being controlling and abusive I would dig my heels in and not give an inch.
    There is a fine line here and it can easily be blurred on either side.
    Perhaps my answer to you above is skewed because of what I know about what R did. There have been a few times that Mr. P has said something to me and I have had to remind him that that was how things were when he met me and he accepted it then so why was he changing the rules now. He has seen my point.
    A truly loving husband would not ask his wife to do something that made her uncomfortable or belittled her. For example Cheryl’s husband asked that she have her ears pierced—that was because it was an excuse for him to buy jewelry. He asked that she dye her hair, she explained why that wasn’t comfortable for her so he agreed and she didn’t dye her hair. (Perhaps I should tell Mr. P that Cheryl isn’t dying her hair for him)
    One of the things I liked about my friend Leesie’s husband is that she was extremely self conscious about her acne scars. He convinced her that he thought she was so beautiful that she didn’t have to wear the heavy makeup she had been wearing. In that situation it was a loving thing not a controlling thing.
    A lot of this is subjective. It has more to do with the intent and the relationship than it does to say that if my husband wants me to let my hair grow out I cop and attitude and go get it cut. Now if he wants me to grow it down past my behind, well that’s another story.

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  17. I tend to view any criticism or attempt to change me as controlling. I also asked for my husband’s input on my above post. You all got some of his opinion as well.
    Cheryl and Donna are correct that R wasn’t Emily’s husband but she also put herself in a position for him to try to control her.
    It has been my experience that a real man wants a real woman.
    I think the best example any of us have of a good marriage is Chas and Elvera. She has managed their money quite well over the years and I just can’t imagine him telling her she looks anything but nice.
    He tells us all the time how lucky he is to have snagged her and I have a sneaky suspicion she would tell us the same thing. THAT is a good marriage.
    I think I am pretty lucky to have found Mr. P…the jury is still out on whether or not he is lucky to have found me.

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  18. My question was not about Emily & R, they are long over. But after my conversation with her, my mind started thinking about how a Christian wife could handle a similar situation without being a doormat, but also without neglecting biblical submissiveness.

    Kim – In mentioning that a Christian wife should take her husband’s preferences into account in her clothing or hair or whatnot, I didn’t mean that she needs her husband to tell her what to do. But I do think it is an act of love & respect for a wife to try to please her husband in these areas, where he has expressed an opinion. You & Cheryl both gave examples of this.

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  19. Karen there are abused spouses everywhere. I have a friend whose BROTHER was being abused by his wife. I have a gay family member who was being abused by his boyfriend.
    My suggestion is that if something is making your uncomfortable or unhappy or just niggling at you it is best to check it out with a Christian therapist, minister, or a Godly woman.
    If you told me that Lee strongly felt you should not work outside of the home, as long as that was comfortable for you there would be nothing wrong with it. It Lee refused to give you any money and didn’t want you working outside of the home I would dig a little deeper to see if he was trying to control you.
    If Lee threw a fit and didn’t want you on this blog or on Facebook and it wasn’t an obsession for you, I would dig deeper. Currently Mr. P and I are watching the evening news and I am typing this. He asked me what I was doing. I told him and he got up to go get something to drink.
    If Lee asked you not to get on the internet and your house was a wreck, Forrest was dirty, and there was no dinner ready…well then I would have to say Lee had grounds to ask you to spend a little more time focused on family and home.

    Am I making my point or am I just rambling?

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  20. Do you know what is more frustrating than driving through the snow to deliver grades to a community college, only to find the doors locked and no one there (at 4:30, when they were supposed to be there until 5.)? Having an accident when I hit some black ice, that’s what! If I hadn’t had to have the grades in today (they want the paperwork, not electronic), I wouldn’t have had the accident. I’m okay, and so is the other guy. I spun around, hit the back end of a semi trailer, just behind the wheels, then spun around again into the median. Amazingly, the semi driver maintained control of his truck.

    Now to deal with the insurance.

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  21. Sorry to hear about your accident, Peter, but glad you’re okay.

    AJ, I’ve got an early request. Monday is Beethoven’s (presumed) birthday. Any of his works would be great — surprise me. 😉

    Happy Belated Birthday, Janice!

    AnnMS, I’ve also been thinking of you, hoping all is going well on the homeschooling front.

    Interesting discussion today, but not as much time to participate as I’d like. Lots of things to do today and tomorrow…

    Later…

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  22. Peter – So sorry you had to go through that. Glad you’re not hurt, but don’t be surprised if some aches set in tonight or tomorrow from the stress of the event.

    Kim – Yup, I get what you’re saying.

    So Cheryl suggests submitting as long as it isn’t something wrong, & you suggest digging one’s heals in. 🙂

    Cheryl (or anyone else who’d like to chime in) – One thing I was ruminating on, which I briefly mentioned in my first comment, is that submitting to controlling “preferences” (as opposed to loving preferences) could be enabling a man to continue, & fall further into, an unhealthy (for both wife & husband) mental/emotional state.

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  23. Thanks, all. Kim- I know what I’m supposed to do, but when it happens, it happens so fast there isn’t time to remember what to do.

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  24. oh Peter,I hate black ice. Glad that you are okay, but not happy that you are going to have to drive there again to deliver the grades.

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  25. I have a lot of thoughts on the above, but will keep most of them to myself. I will say that after my husband left and before we were divorced. I felt that I was under the authority of the elders of my church. No, they never said anything. I simply felt that that was what God said. They did not intrude in any way and helped in many ways. I simply felt that if there was a decision that I needed help with, then I could go to them for prayer and advice. I have also gone to the same church now for 40 years and highly respect the elders.

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  26. When I was divorced I sought the advice of Godly people. For a while I didn’t have a church I was heavily involved in. I chose my advisors carefully.

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  27. Jo – I hope you know that your thoughts would be very welcome here.

    I’m not trying to start an argument or make any point, but am sort of musing aloud.

    It didn’t occur to me at first, but I did have an issue in my marriage a while back where I wrestled with how to “stand up for myself” while remaining submissive. I finally realized that taking a firm stand for my feelings in that particular issue was also the loving thing to do for my husband.

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  28. I made a comment about black ice yesterday as we were driving. One of the sixteen year olds told me to stop being racist. Glad you are okay, Peter L. It is a scary thing to lose control of the car like that. It is a scary thing to lose control of my boots like that.

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  29. To follow up on my last comment, it wasn’t merely a matter of my opinion vs. his opinion on an issue, but a deeper matter of how he often treated me. I won’t get into any more details on that, so as not to disrespect him. But I will say that, although difficult to bring up, my taking a stance on the matter, & continuing to be respectfully firm about it, helped both of us quite a bit. And of course, I only did that after having prayed about it for quite a while, seeking God’s guidance on how to handle the situation.

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  30. Karen, several things. First, it might be a surprise to all of you, but I actually have a few opinions here and there. My husband not only knows this, but is quite pleased by it (he likes being married to someone who can think and who can help him think through things), and he also is quite pleased that I feel free to tell him when I disagree with him (or when I am not convinced by something he believes, and need more evidence)–but I do it respectfully and in private.

    Second, my own personal experience has been two years of marriage to a very good-willed man, who loves to shower me with love in multiple ways. Today in the grocery store he had me go pick up meat while he got tea, and when we got to the checkout I found that he had slipped a bag of chocolate into the cart–a variety that I like and he doesn’t, and that was not in the same aisle with the tea. He’s easy to love, and easy to submit to.

    Third (in tension with point #2), our own personal experience isn’t the measure of truth. I know at least one person who spent time married to someone who didn’t treat her well, and still determined that her responsibility was to love and honor her husband. Eventually she saw him come to Christ and they had a happy marriage. (Obviously we have no such guarantees.) But even while he wasn’t acting like a Christian (or wasn’t a Christian at all, whichever was the case–she believed him to be a Christian when they married, and so did I), it was her responsibility to do what God tells a wife to do. Even though her situation was much harder than mine, the truth was what mattered.

    Fourth, in response to this comment: “One thing I was ruminating on, which I briefly mentioned in my first comment, is that submitting to controlling “preferences” (as opposed to loving preferences) could be enabling a man to continue, & fall further into, an unhealthy (for both wife & husband) mental/emotional state.”: Yes, this is true. But it is likewise true (and has more biblical support) that submitting in love to a husband who doesn’t deserve it might lead him to repentance. And choosing not to submit to a husband because he doesn’t deserve it is more likely to leave both spouses more deeply entrenched in their rights and what the other one doesn’t deserve. Again, we can only control our own actions, not that of our spouse. Choose to love him and he may or may not respond in love–but that is his choice. Choose to disrespect him and you are likely to be deepening the animosity between you, and it’s likely that both of you will be sinning and not just him.

    This is all within the context I’ve already set: we aren’t talking about a wife who is sinning because her husband expects it, and we are not talking about a wife overlooking abuse and danger to herself and/or her children. And we are also not saying that a wife can’t “speak up” respectfully. We are talking about unkindness and selfishness, not abuse.

    I’ve already had a couple times when something my husband did was hard for me to handle. One time he wasn’t feeling well and he hurt my feelings when I was trying to say something and he didn’t hear me–the kind of trivial offense that can hurt, and yes, it did, even though I knew that he probably hadn’t actually done anything wrong. But here’s the thing: my husband is a good-hearted man, and I chose to remind myself of that and focus on that, not the minor “offense.” But let’s say he was a little lower on the good-hearted scale, maybe a 5 on a scale of 1 to 10. It would still be in the best interests of our marriage to assume the best from him. Sometimes my assessment would end up being wrong–but until proven otherwise, isn’t it best to give “the benefit of the doubt” to the person with whom one is in covenant union? So I rate him higher than he deserves and treat him better than he deserves–I feel better about our marriage and I treat him better as well. Have I really lost anything?

    Again, we really can’t know another person’s motives. Maybe my husband actually had bad motives when he bought me the candy–I can’t know that. But I can treat him with the assumption–unless proven otherwise–that his heart for me is good, even if he is grumpy or unkind some afternoon. Rather than trying to figure out what “bad” motive he has for wanting a certain thing, I can (1) do what he requests with a cheerful spirit or (2) respectfully ask him why this particular thing is important to him.

    And if my own behavior is right before God and before my husband, I have stepped out of the way of being a stumbling block to my husband. If I am 100% right and he is 100% wrong (highly unlikely), then God can deal with him and not with me. I can leave him to God to deal with what he is doing wrong, but I myself am right before God and my husband.

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  31. Sorry, that was quite long. And Karen, I definitely believe that a wife is within biblical parameters when she “calls” her husband on sin, whether sin against her or against someone else. But I think that’s different from second-guessing his motives and choosing whether or not to submit on a given item based on what she guesses his motives to be.

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  32. Hey, I finally noticed the little ornament at the top that tells the number of posts. Cool
    Also I tried logging on an hour or so ago and couldn’t get on, one never know

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